December 2022 Newsletter

💲 Budget review: City council passed a budget with investments to improve the lives of Calgarians right away.

🥫 Food drive launch: The Mayor’s Annual Food Drive is on and the councillors are taking part in the challenge!

❄️ It’s cold out there: And it’s only getting colder so we have some advice from our friends at The City to get you through winter.

🗳️ Election Feedback: The City wants to hear specifically from immigrant voters.


We had an amazing time watching Team Canada play on the big screen we set up at the Genesis Centre fieldhouse. Even though Canada didn’t win, I loved that I got to share the moment Alphonso Davies scored Canada’s first ever goal at the men’s World Cup with dozens of screaming young soccer fans. Thank you for everyone who came and all our partners who helped make it happen: Calgary Northeast United FC, KidsPlay Foundation, Genesis Centre, and Randeep and the House of Bounce team.

A special congratulations goes out to Coach Ahmed from CNEU FC who received a Queen’s Jubilee medal for his dedication to volunteering and coaching for the past 15 years.


A better budget for Calgary

City council wrapped up budget week with a number of key investments to help Calgarians weather current affordability challenges and set the city up for long-term growth. As I said in the previous newsletter, it was going to be tough to balance our revenue challenges and cost increases related to inflation. But I’m pleased that council was able to agree on targeted measures that will improve life in our city for all Calgarians.

  • For 2023, transit fares are frozen, children 12 and under can ride for free, and family passes are reduced during weekends
  • Increased funding for safer mobility infrastructure (5A network)
  • Increased funding for firefighters
  • Increased funding for snow clearing
  • Increased funding for key civic partners
  • Increased funding to support Calgary’s Mental Health and Addiction Strategy, which includes maintaining community programming and activating new partnerships between Calgary police and community organizations
  • Funding to hire more peace officers
  • A motion to engage the Provincial government for funding to extend the Blue Line and build the “people mover” airport connector

What does this mean for you? We dipped into a surplus to ensure we move forward with addressing the main priorities I heard from you over the past few months. We’re not increasing transit fees, we’re addressing community safety issues and we’re taking action on the climate emergency. Some things will improve immediately while other changes will take some time. But this budget gets us going in the right direction and my focus is now ensuring Ward 5 sees the investments in infrastructure and city services it needs and deserves.


Food drive launch

Last month we set the stage for the Mayor’s Annual Food Drive / City Councillors challenge. Now it’s officially on! The mayor and city council gathered on an early Thursday morning to kick things off with a food packing race at the Calgary Food Bank Warehouse. In just 30 minutes, we bagged almost 16,000 lbs. worth of food! The Ward 5 team bagged 1630 lbs, which was good enough for 3rd place.

Now it’s up to the community to contribute. Reminder we have TWO main locations where you can drop food off: Dashmesh Culture Centre and Saddletowne Library at the Genesis Centre. To show everyone how serious the Ward 5 office is about winning this challenge, we’ve worked with some community partners to set up additional drop-off locations. Here they are:

  • Baitun Nur Mosque
  • Chalo Freshco Saddletowne
  • Mega Sanjha Punjab (locations in Cityscape, Taradale and Falconridge)
  • Generations Multi-Generational Housing and Community Centre
  • OK Food and Produce
  • Falconridge/Castleridge Community Hall

We’re also activating our partners with the Love with Humanity Association, Calgary Police Service District 5 Detachment, all of the Ward 5 community associations, Red FM and a number of local businesses. It truly is a united effort and I’m proud that so many groups and people in our ward have stepped up to help. The link to make a monetary donation is also now live.

Thanks for joining me in this challenge!


Winter is coming

We already got our first taste of winter right at the beginning of November and as we get closer to “official winter,” we can just expect more snow, ice, and chilly temperatures. Fortunately, city council took the proactive step during budget deliberations to direct the city’s snow control team to improve the response time in trouble areas within neighbourhoods. That means they’ll be higher on the priority list even if we haven’t declared a snow event.

Snow route parking bans
During heavy snowfalls, the city can and will ban parking on designated routes so crews can plow roads more efficiently. Keep an eye and ear out for these announcements. They can last up to 72 hours and result in your car getting ticketed or towed if you leave them parked. Hit the link below to see where these designated snow routes are.

Protect your pipes from freezing
Every winter some Calgarians experience frozen water pipes, which can result in water outages. Here are some tips to prevent your pipes from freezing:

  1. Look for cold drafts in unheated areas where water supply lines are located. This includes basements, crawl spaces, attics, garages and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets.
  2. Repair broken windows, check doors and insulate areas that allow cold exterior air to enter.
  3. Insulate your hot and cold water pipes that are located in cold areas.
  4. Open interior doors and cabinets in cold areas to allow heat from the house to warm unprotected pipes.
  5. Keep the heat set to at least 15°C.
  6. Make sure the water line to outside faucets, garden hoses, pools or decorative water features is turned off, disconnected and drained.
  7. If your hot water tank is in a maintenance room outside of your home, make sure the area is adequately heated.
  8. Regularly run water in your pipes through everyday use. You can also run a continuous pencil-width stream of water, but you will be responsible for any increase in water charges unless you received an official notice from The City of Calgary instructing you to do so.

Elections Calgary looking for immigrants’ opinions on voting

Elections Calgary wants to better understand barriers and gaps faced by immigrant citizens when it comes to voting in municipal (City of Calgary) elections. When The City understands why immigrant citizens choose to vote or not vote in municipal elections, it can address ways to better serve voters for future elections.

From December 1-15, 2022, immigrant Calgarians are invited to visit an online survey to share their knowledge and interest in voting in municipal elections. The online survey is anonymous, will be available in multiple languages, and will take approximately 15 minutes to complete. This data will add to the City’s understanding of barriers to election participation among newcomers.

Survey Eligibility: If you have immigrated to Canada and call Calgary home, you are eligible to participate in this survey.

Mayor Gondek and I got together to remind Calgarians to support our small businesses. Invest local, shop local, and buy local because that makes our local communities more resilient!


Community Events

Martindale Community Association Meeting
December 5, Genesis Centre
7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Click for more info

Breakfast with Santa, Falconridge-Castleridge Community Association
December 10, 95 Falshire Way NE
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Click for more info

Taradale Community Association Meeting
December 14, Genesis Centre
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Click for more info

Skyview Ranch Community Association Meeting
December 15, Virtual (TBC)
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Click for more info

STAY CONNECTED

The best way for me to do my job in serving you is to have open lines of communication. Your ideas and feedback are important to me!